But ensuring that this massive loss would not affect normal proceedings, the magazine will reach its nearly six thousand permanent members across the state on Saturday. “According to the established routine, Sadhana goes for printing every Tuesday. But this week is an exception owing to the unfortunate incident. However, on Tuesday evening, before last rites of Dr Dabholkar, Shaila tai (his wife) asked me whether the magazine had gone for printing or not,” said Vinod Shirsath, executive editor of Sadhana.
“Doctor (Dabholkar) was my only friend, and yours too. But even after this tragedy, if you managed to send the magazine for printing today itself, he would have appreciated it,” Shaila told Shirsath on August 20 in Satara. Sadhana was instituted by freedom fighter Sane Guruji way back in 1948. After completing 50 years, in 1998 the then editor Prof GP Pradhan requested Dabholkar to take charge of it. The rationalist had accepted the responsibility after informing Pradhan that he would be in Pune for two days every week to oversee the work of the publication.
“The next issue will be available on Saturday. Though Dr Dabholkar had arrived in the city late on Monday night, he had had a look at the issue. In what is an aberration, this week the edition of Sadhana went for printing on Thursday instead of Tuesday. But it’s special as this is the last issue handled by Dabholkar sir,” said Suresh Mane, DTP operator, who has been associated with Sadhana for the last 28 years.
“Before Dabholkar took charge of Sadhana, it was a 20-page black and white magazine with around two thousand regular readers. The then editor Vasant Bapat had even expressed fears that the magazine might have to close down in the absence of an efficient successor. But Dabholkar sir not only expanded Sadhana’s circulation, but with his dynamic leadership he drew many renowned columnists. Today, Sadhana publishes 44 general issues and six special issues annually,” Shirsath told MiD DAY.
Pressed for time
Over the past few days, the 10-member team of Sadhana has been bearing the dual responsibility of ensuring not only this week’s issue but the next one too, which will be dedicated to Dabholkar. “We don’t have much time. I am have approached at least 100 people through email, who were very closely associated with Dabholkar sir, requesting them to share their memories of him. However we will ensure that the special issue will not repeat the content, which has already been published in newspapers over this week,” Shirsath maintained.